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Ilex Foundation #11: Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings

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Ilex Foundation #11: Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings presents a far-reaching reassessment of the classical Persian epic known as the Shahnama or "Book of Kings," composed by the poet Ferdowsi in the early eleventh century ce. Combining comparative perspectives with a close reading of the internal evidence provided by the text of this epic, Olga M. Davidson argues that the poet of the Shahnama is actually a character in the epic, coexisting with ancient Iranian heroes and kings whose deeds are celebrated by the poetry. The poet can have the role of a character because his poetry comes to life in performance. Whenever the Shahnama was performed by the poet or by later practitioners of his poetry, the performer could interact with his grand characters by re-engaging with their stories, as if for the first time. After documenting the oral poetic performance traditions underlying the text of the Shahnama in all its variations, Davidson argues that the heroic tradition of this epic is deeply ancient, stemming from Indo-European poetic traditions. A primary example is the great warrior Rostam, who upholds Iranian kingship while at the same time posing a threat to kings who prove unworthy of the crown.

Synopsis:

Olga M. Davidson's major reassessment of the classical Persian epic the Shahnama argues that its poet is actually a character in the work who coexists with the heroes and kings celebrated in the poem. Documenting the text's oral performance tradition, Davidson shows that the heroic style of the Shahnama stems from ancient Indo-European traditions.

About the Author

Olga M. Davidson is a Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Muslim Societies and Civilizations at Boston University.

Boston University

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674073210
Subtitle:
Third Edition
Author:
Davidson, Olga M.
Publisher:
Ilex Foundation
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literary Criticism-Poetry
Subject:
Literary Criticism-Middle Eastern
Copyright:
Edition Description:
New edition
Series:
Ilex Series
Series Volume:
11
Publication Date:
20130708
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
188
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Epic
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

Ilex Foundation #11: Poet and Hero in the Persian Book of Kings New Trade Paper
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Product details 188 pages Ilex Foundation - English 9780674073210 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Olga M. Davidson's major reassessment of the classical Persian epic the Shahnama argues that its poet is actually a character in the work who coexists with the heroes and kings celebrated in the poem. Documenting the text's oral performance tradition, Davidson shows that the heroic style of the Shahnama stems from ancient Indo-European traditions.
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